Federal Reserve Board Chairman Jerome Powell speaks during his news conference after a Federal Open Market Committee meeting in Washington, U.S., December 19, 2018. REUTERS/Yuri Gripas
TOKYO (Reuters) – U.S. President Donald Trump has discussed firing Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell, Bloomberg reported on Saturday, citing sources.
Trump’s frustration with the U.S. central bank chief intensified after this week’s interest rate increase and months of stock-market losses, the news agency said, citing four unidentified people familiar with the matter.
The president has talked privately about firing Powell many times in the past few days, it said, citing two of the people.
White House spokesmen declined to comment, as did Federal Reserve spokeswoman Michelle Smith, Bloomberg reported.
The Fed raised interest rates on Wednesday for the fourth time in 2018, and signaled “some further gradual” rate increases ahead.
Global financial markets, including Wall Street stocks, had been hoping for a more dovish policy outlook and sold off broadly.
Any attempt to fire Powell could be seen as undermining the central bank’s independence from the administration.
Reporting By Tomo Uetake; Editing by Robert Birsel